As a child you grow up with symbols of wealth and what a happy life is through toys. A beautiful figure who is seemingly perfect; perfect life, perfect boyfriend, perfect friends. She has it all; closet full of the newest fashions, multiple fancy cars for every occasion, and a dreamhome. I brought these toys into our reality. I created a world where for whatever reason the dreamhome has been abandoned. Maybe it was foreclosed on, or maybe the original occupants were run off. It has been left behind and is in ruins. When all is lost what do we call home? Is it a space or a state of mind? Fittingly, I was down to my last few rolls of Kodak Portra VC; a beautiful film that electrifies magenta and yellow hues that has since been discontinued. I wanted to send it off in the best possible way. This series is my love letter to that film and my proclamation that girls will not be told that their value is based on material facades and unattainable goals.
i was born in fort worth, texas in the early 80s. it was a great place to be a kid. full of nature, wildlife, and wide open spaces. we moved to the d.c. area for most of my adolescence, but texas never left my parents' hearts. eventually they moved back to the city they always felt was home. what they came back to was a place that had been overrun by the natural gas industry. large drills were erected on every swath of open space, totaling over 1,000 active wells within fort worth city limits. one such drill with a tarp barrier around it was across the street from homes in my parents' neighborhood, less than a football field away from where kids play. homes will sit on the market waiting for buyers, but no one will buy when you can smell chemicals in the air and drinking water. an area not known to have earthquakes prior now experiences tremors. in 2011-12 with my holga in hand i documented the beauty that this place still has where the wildflowers fight to take back their landscape.
not your doll
photoshop is now at the tip of everyone's fingertips. when images reach the art department of a publication, ad agency, or stock image house they become riddled with notes for retouching: make the waist smaller, breasts bigger, whiten teeth, sometimes even a head swap is thrown in. with these tools, imaginary bodies and impossible ideals are created and sent out into the ether to be consumed by the general public, including elementary school-aged girls first becoming aware of their own bodies. our idea of femininity is “frankensteined.” the first image that was created for this series in 2009 was “hallux ridigus,” taken the afternoon the bandages came off my feet from having a bilateral bunionectomy, a relatively common, and widely preventable, surgery. when I went back to work, what I heard shocked me: “how soon can you wear heels?”